Our final day in Iceland started EARLY.
We had an 8 AM admission to the Blue Lagoon, which meant we had to catch our shuttle at 6:30. Since our flight home was later in the afternoon, we had to take our bags with us. Of note, you have to book the Blue Lagoon in advance. Because of its popularity, I wouldn’t recommend waiting until the last minute to book entry. Liz and I booked a few months in advance, and tickets for our day were already low in supply.
Once at the Blue Lagoon, we checked in and were given bracelets that served as our – everything. They were the way we were charged for anything we purchased while in the lagoon, and how we accessed our lockers. They are very serious about those bracelets. They give several demonstrations on how to wear them properly while you wait in line and charge a not small fee if you lose them. They are also color-coded to designate the package you purchased.
Even though Liz and I had the most “basic” package the Blue Lagoon offers, it still felt like a spa experience. We changed into our swimsuits and headed to the showers. Before you get into the lagoon, you have to wash off (sans bathing suit), no exceptions. They provide conditioner and shower gel, and its advised that you leave the conditioner in your hair before getting into the lagoon. The water doesn’t damage your hair, but it does make it dry. The conditioner helps.
Once we were squeaky clean, it was into the lagoon.
Because of the time of year, our first two hours in the lagoon were in the dark and it was magical. The lagoon is well lit, but being in the water under the stars was spectacular. Because it was January, the rocks were covered in snow and ice, making the setting that much more incredible, especially as the water itself was so hot. It even snowed for a few minutes while we were floating around. We took very few photos, opting to enjoy the moment instead. We also got one last glimpse of the Northern Lights!
There are a few food and drink options at the Blue Lagoon, including a swim-up bar. We bought smoothies (mostly because they were made with skyr) and enjoyed them while lulling around in the lagoon. We were also able to slather on silica masks, which left my skin so soft and clean.
The lagoon truly is a wonder. It is self-cleansing, and entirely renews itself every 40 hours. It’s on average between 98 and 104 degrees Fahrenheit, although there are definitely pockets that are warmer than others. Another fun fact? The water is actually white! The blue color comes from how the silica is reflected by the sunlight. If you were to put it in a clear cup, it would actually be white!
We spent some time in the sauna and enjoyed the lagoon for several hours before we finally called it a day. When you get out of the lagoon, your limbs feel heavy from the minerals. It’s a similar feeling to what I imagine it would be to push through quicksand. It’s a weird feeling but fades away relatively quickly.
Since we had time to kill, we decided to get lunch at the grab and go cafe. Let’s just say it wasn’t the cheapest meal we had the whole time we were there, nor was it the very best. Next time (because I intend to go back!), I’ll either bring snacks or eat a good meal before or after.
We booked our Blue Lagoon visit through Reykjavik Excursions, the same company that handled our Northern Lights tour. They made getting to the Blue Lagoon, and then to the airport, easy. Breaking it down, it was also the most cost-effective option, by the time we took into account the costs of not only entering the Blue Lagoon, but paying for transportation there, and then to the airport.
Our flight home was just before dinner, and Icelandair doesn’t serve meals, so we had one last Icelandic hot dog (although it wasn’t as good as the ones from the night before), and I finally tried Liz’s beloved Joe & The Juice (worth it!).
Iceland was memorable and incredible. It’s my second favorite place I’ve been. It’s going to be hard to top Nicaragua, but I also didn’t think London could be dethroned as my favorite place in the world. It’s now third.
I’m planning another Iceland post or two on planning and packing, but ultimately, my best advice is to just go. Buy the ticket and head the Land of Ice and Fire. Or anywhere else your heart desires.